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Xbox 360 price cut leads to 40% sales surge

Console wars continue with the launch of new PS3s

Xbox 360 sales increased by 40 percent following a European price cut.

Earlier this month, Microsoft announced it was slashing the price of all three Xbox 360 models. The standard Premium Xbox 360 was reduced to £199, the black Elite to £259.99 and the basic Arcade model to £159.99, making it cheaper than a Nintendo Wii.

Dorian Bloch, director of Chart-Track, a research firm that monitors the sale of music, videos and software, told Gamesindustry.biz that while hardware sales have been boosted, software sales did not see an increase.

"That's mainly because the week prior there were big new 360 releases like Army of Two, Bully and MX vs ATV," Bloch said, explaining that a drop-off in the following week is typical.

"Xbox 360 is up 35 to 40 percent - that's from Friday, when the price cut came into effect, up to midnight Saturday," he added. "The real litmus test will be over the next three to four weeks – it's too early to read too much into it at this stage."

The console giants have also been busy releasing limited editions. A GTA-branded Xbox 360 was unveiled last week, although only 500 units will be produced. Similarly, Sony announced Metal Gear Solid 4 gun-metal PS3 will be launched in Japan on June 12th.

BD-Live, the Blu-Ray 2.0 spec PS3, is also expected to be released imminently while the next PlayStation 3 firmware update will add the new interactive features to the PS3, with speculation rife that it will include the ability to copy supporting Blu-Ray titles to a PSP for playback.

Separately, Nintendo reported that Super Smash Bros Brawl for the Wii sold more than 1.4 million copies in the US in just one week - making it the fastest-selling game in Nintendo's history.

Despite this, Nintendo's stock was downgraded last week due to fears of slowing demand for the console. Joystick.com reported KBC Securities Japan had downgraded Nintendo's stock from a 'buy' to a 'hold' recommendation because of worries that Wii and DS sales will slow after "explosive growth" in the last year.


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